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Somalia: An Open Letter to the Chief Justice

By Leyla Qasim
Bashe Yusuf Ahmed, Somalia's new chief justice

My Lordship, please receive my belated congratulations and warm regards from the slopes of the picturesque Daallo hills where I am currently on working vacation with my beloved Ayeeyo.

Your Lordship, your appointment to the position of Chief Justice came a shock to me. Not that you aren't qualified but because of the unique  and important singular role that the position aught to serve for an entire nation, I thought there were people more deserving of, better prepared and qualified for the position than you'll ever be, even after you log ten years experience on the job from now.

My Lords, our country has had the unfortunate dishonor of been treated to embarrassing cycles of mismatching positions of responsibility and persons holding them. Problems of such mismatch are myriad but the phychological one is the most crippling of them all to the person mismatched to the position. However hard such a person tries to justify and validate themselves they fall short. Deepseated feeling of inadequacy becomes inevitable, creating hard to overcome confidence crisis that would intern have direct bearing on the productivity.

Many are the times when such situations of feeling inadequate prevented affected persons from engaging meaningfully with their "peers" or "counterparts" in meetings or receptions. Just picture in your minds for a second the emotions that will run through if an amateur boxer were to meet for a friendly with Mayflower?

A devastating feeling, you'd say. The feeling will not be any different when a person who rose to the rank of a General within five years or less (even then without fighing a single battle or ever drawing a single strategy) are up for a meeting with admirals from AFRICOM, CJTF-HOA. Masaajidka ciyaarta ka daaya! So is a Minister who was a cab driver or Al-Shabaab hitman. You get the point, my Lords?

My Lords, hadda iyo dan, moving forward instead of dwelling in the past. You are best we got and we expect only best from you. Now that you got the job, only you can stop yourself from making huge impact as the CJ in whose rein justice was not only restored but also reigned supreme.

How do you do that? Impossible things happen. Your appointment happened, of course. You too can make the impossible happen. Please make it happen. By entering into a contract with the masses. Don't excuse the absence of judicial service commission. You can cover miles before its formed as you'd not be bogged down by bureaucracy of consultations.

In as much as you mustn't disobey nor betray your appointing authority unjustly, you equally mustn't be doing their bidding of unjustly. The only bidding you aught to be doing is justice's.

My Lords, you must have noticed that the judiciary, like with the tons of work burried under the other two arms of government, is still virgin and unexplored in terms of making meaningful remorms and doing the unthinkable. As such, I sincerely implore you to side with justice and be it's helper. If you are lucky enough to do that you'd have quenched the thirst for justice by Somalis (charity begins at home) in all their millions.

My Lords, in as much as we Somalis have the dubious distinction to cry justice only when it serves our individual, family, community, clan ( in that order) please always remember many were the times when Somalia were the helpless beneficiary of justice agitated for by civil society, activists, lawyers, legislators, rabbis, reverends, bishops, the pop, law enforcement officers, and justly dispensed by courts and judges who, not only were they not Somalis, but weren't even Africans, or Arabs, or Muslims.

Remember the judge in US court of Hawaii, Washington State, Virginia. It's ironically tragic, pitty, foolish of us to want others to be just to us (and they sure do) and when we are the exact opposite-- unjust-- among ourselves in our our own country.

Masaajidka ciyaarta aan ka dayno!

Good luck, my Lords, and May God Guide you, Give you wisdom, Give you Inspiration, Give you foresight, Give you the courage to stand for justice and succeed with it, Give you good health, mental agility and patience, Give you support from the most unlikely and from the most unexpected of placea and sources, and May He Bless your work and your office in furyherence of the wellfare of our country, that of the region, the continent, and the entire world. Last, but not least, may you prove your critics wrong. Aamiin.

By: Layla Qasim

The view and opinion expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of Garowe Online.